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What are the options on Trimming Your Laminated Documents?

Jeff McRitchie posted this on May 6, 2016

Once you’ve laminated your documents, you might need to trim away some excess laminate.There are five ways you can do this, depending on what you want and need such as a completely straight line or one that involves utilizing items commonly found around the office. That said, here are the five methods. Check them out…

  1. For those with steady hands: scissors. If you have extremely steady hands, scissors are one way you can trim your laminated items. If you do choose to use scissors, be sure to select a high-quality pair from a reputable manufacturer, such as Dahle. They have a full-lineup of great scissors that are super sharp and can make it easy to trim away the excess laminate.
  2. For those wanting a safe method: GBC Zippy Knives. These small handheld devices from GBC are great tools to use when trimming laminated items. A super sharp blade is secured inside a plastic handle and cuts straightly for a great finish. Your fingers will also be safe from the blade due the design of the handle. You can even use these knives to separate your document from the laminating film after it exits your laminator. These cutters are available in a variety of colors and can be used to cut other items including ribbon, paper, cardstock, and thread.
  3. For those wanting a completely straight line: rotary trimmers. There are a number of rotary trimmers on the market and just about all of them can be used to trim laminated documents, especially if you require a super straight cut.. You’ll need to use a trimmer that’s large enough for your document, such as a 12″ one for a letter-sized document. Trimmers such as these have cutting lengths that range from 9″ to 63″, so there’s one out there that’s ideal for your particular document. There are some trimmers can even produce wavy cuts if you want to give your item a special look. Some good trimmers to check out are the Swingline Commercial Cut series, the Akiles Roll-A-Blade 1815, and the Fellowes Atom 130 and 180.
  4. For high-volume operations: trimming machines. There are a number of automatic trimmers on the market that are great if you laminate a lot of documents frequently and find it would be impossible (or too time-consuming) to trim everything by hand. These machines are typically designed for super large items such as banners and tend to have cutting lengths from 13″ to 63″. A device such as the Pro-Lam 13″ Automatic Laminating Trimmer can be used for smaller objects such as book covers, photographs, and so on. Good machines for larger application include the GBC Pro-Trim 63″ Lamination Trimmer.
  5. For those on a budget: a ruler/straight edge and razor/knife. Finally, you can always trim your documents with a straight edge and either a razor blade or some kind of knife. It’s inexpensive (you probably already have the supplies you need) and doesn’t require investing in an expensive machine. This method is also incredibly fast and easy, especially if you only have a small number of items to trim. If you do choose this method, be careful so you don’t end up cutting yourself.

Finally, no matter which method you choose, please be careful. That way your document will look great and you’ll stay safe. Good luck and happy trimming!